Biohazards Committee

Committee Responsibilities


The Biohazards Committee works closely with and serves as a resource to the Department of Environmental Health and Safety, the Institutional Biosafety/rDNA Committee (IBC), and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).  The responsibilities of the Biohazards Committee include:

  • Oversee the registration of biohazardous material and/or biological agents (except recombinant DNA work) to ascertain if precautions are adequate to protect personnel and the environment, and recommend measures necessary for safely working with such materials.

  • Review and/or propose procedures for maintaining safe work environments and for compliance with federal, state, and local regulations involving the procurement, use, containment, decontamination, disinfection, and/or disposal of biological agents or biohazardous materials.
  • Oversee the commissioning and de-commissioning of facilities requiring containment above Biosafety Level 2 (BSL-2) and Animal Biosafety Level 2 (ABSL-2).  Review and approve associated Standard Operating Procedures for such facilities with regard to the design, commissioning and approval.

  • Review medical surveillance programs aimed at preventing laboratory-acquired infections.

  • Review incident reports involving biohazardous materials or biological agents, and recommend corrective actions to prevent recurrence, eliminate hazards or provide appropriate follow-up for exposed individuals.
  • Provide consultation on emergency response planning involving the proper handling, disinfection and disposal of biohazardous agents.

  • Mediate disputes over the proper handling, use, or disposal of biohazardous materials, and/or the proper containment of biological agents.
  • Review and approve revisions or additions to the University of Pittsburgh Bloodborne Pathogen Exposure Control Plan.

  • Advise on training efforts developed to communicate relevant procedures and programs.

Committee Members

Lee Harrison

Chairman - Faculty - Infectious Disease

Cristian Apetrei

Faculty - Microbiology & Molecular Genetics

Katy Board

Staff - RBL Biosafety Officer

Denise Capozzi

Staff - Director, Education & Compliance Office

Pete Chambers

Staff - Director, Shared Research Support Services

Jason Dechant

Faculty - Health Promotion & Development

Robert Duda

Faculty - Biological Sciences

Jay Frerotte

Staff - Director, Environmental Health & Safety

Beverly Harding

Staff - Director, Recombinant DNA Office

Amy Hartman

Faculty - Infectious Disease & Microbiology

Edwin C. Klein

Staff - DLAR Veterinary Services

William Klimstra

Faculty - Microbiology & Molecular Genetics

Yolanda Lang

Staff - Employee Health Services

Rebecca Lingenfelter

Staff - EH&S Associate Biosafety Officer

Teresa Silvaggio

Staff - Employee Health Services

Molly Stitt-Fischer

Staff - EH&S Biosafety Officer

Chu Wang

Staff - Radiation Safety Office